Inside the Collections Care Project: Porcelain jugs look like animal tusks

Aug 5, 2014

Historic New England’s Collections Care Project is in full swing as we continue to move shelves and shelves of ceramic dinner sets, children’s mugs, tea sets, and redware pottery.

This week we rediscovered these interestingly shaped porcelain jugs. Both were produced in England in the 1880s by the Worcester Royal Porcelain Company, one of the oldest English porcelain brands in production. The jug pictured on the left exhibits beautiful painted flowers on the body and an antler-shaped handle. 

The smaller jug, pictured on the right, has gold decoration in a vermicelli pattern and a simpler type of handle. Both have long spouts and are referred to as tusk jugs, likely because the vessel resembles the shape of an animal tusk.

One of the many great things about working with historic collections is the opportunity to see all different kinds of objects and their varied materials. Sometimes, collections can surprise you. As the project progresses we will make more images of the collection available through the Collections Access Project. Check it out to see what surprises you! 

Stay tuned for next week’s fascinating object. Support the preservation of Historic New England’s one-of-a-kind collection with a gift to the Collections and Conservation Fund.